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UFC Fighter Removed from Roster After Reality Show Casting Revelation Backfires



The aftermath of UFC 289 has brought about an unexpected roster change, with Maria Oliveira being let go by the promotion.


UFC Roster Watch, a reliable algorithm that tracks the organization's roster, first reported the news, which has since been confirmed by MMA Fighting. Oliveira's contract was not renewed following her loss against Diana Belbita, and her recent revelation about hiding a reality show casting only added to the UFC's decision.


The strawweight fighter's bout against Belbita ended in a decision loss, marking her third defeat in the UFC. Before the fight, Oliveira made waves by admitting that she had concealed her participation in a Brazilian reality show from the UFC, a move that could have coincided with her scheduled UFC 289 bout.


Combining the loss in the octagon with her undisclosed reality show involvement likely contributed to the UFC's choice to part ways with Oliveira. The reality show boasted a one million reais ($200,000) prize for the ultimate winner, offering not only a substantial monetary reward but also increased exposure. Oliveira explained her decision, stating:


"Yes, the fight had been scheduled before I joined the reality show. I was completely aware that if I hadn’t made it to the mansion. They were kind of scheduled at the same time, the show and the fight. So I didn’t negotiate with the UFC (permission for her to participate in the show). I took the fight and I took the show. I took a big chance."


Acknowledging the risks involved, Oliveira expressed her fearless attitude toward taking chances. She understood that canceling a fight on short notice could have severe consequences. She stated:


"When the UFC wants to fire someone, they do it. I ended up not making it to the mansion, so I kept the fight. That’s it. I did what I did and took a risk. I’m not afraid of taking risks."


Oliveira's loss in UFC 289 brought her overall record in the promotion to 1-3. Belbita, her opponent in the fight, revealed that she had fought with a badly injured foot, further highlighting the difficulty of Oliveira's situation. While the precise factors that influenced the UFC's decision remain unclear, the combination of her recent performances and the reality show revelation likely played a role in her release.


Maria Oliveira may have openly embraced her identity as a risk-taker, but her gamble did not pay off this time. Falling short on the reality show and consequently experiencing a late fight camp for UFC 289 culminated in her final bout with the promotion resulting in a loss.


As Oliveira navigates this setback, it remains to be seen what the future holds for her in the world of mixed martial arts. Regardless, her story serves as a reminder that in the competitive realm of professional fighting, the choices made outside the cage can have a significant impact on one's career trajectory.

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